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Bachtell prepared to let go of record

March 04, 2004|by DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

Colby Bachtell's heart still bleeds purple and gold, which is understandable.

More than a decade after Bachtell's last game in a Smithsburg jersey - a jersey in which he scored a Washington County public schools record 1,764 points - he still remembers his battles against South Hagerstown and the pride with which he wore the Leopards' uniform.

"Being a Smithsburg guy, it's hard to pull for South," Bachtell said. "But I'm pulling for him. I'm rooting for him."

Him, in this case, refers to Rebels senior David Miner, who stands on the verge of breaking the mark set by Bachtell in 1993, following a four-year varsity career. With 26 points tonight against Middletown in a Maryland Class 2A West semifinal at South, Miner would claim the public schools record.

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It's a mark Bachtell said he was unaware of until he read about Miner setting the South scoring record last month.

"I didn't even know about it, I had no idea at all," Bachtell said. "(I found out) when I read it in the paper. I knew Rodney Monroe from Goretti had a lot of points, but I didn't know (I had the public schools record)."

Bachtell remembers most the games against county schools South, North Hagers-town and Williamsport.

"Back when I played, we had real good rivalries with all of them," Bachtell said. "Games back then were more competitive without a dominant team. If we played North and South, it was a big game. Going to North and South and playing them, in front of a packed house, it was a lot of fun with the energy and the excitement."

Bachtell was in the crowd when Miner and the Rebels played Jan. 23 at Smithsburg. Miner scored 31 points that night, and Bachtell came away impressed.

"I saw him play one time, and he's very good," Bachtell said. "He's very quick and aggressive. He's a great athlete.

"I've seen a lot of guys play, and if he's the one that breaks my record, I'll be gracious. I'll pull for him and hope he wins a state title. I never scored 34 or 35 (points) in a game. The other night (Tuesday) he scored 54, and I'm like, 'My God, I could never score 54.'"

Thought it's hard for Bachtell to root for a player on a team other than his beloved Leopards, he understands the nature of records and that it was only a matter of time before someone came along and surpassed his mark.

"It's great to be broken," Bachtell said. "(Miner) is a great player, and hopefully someday someone comes along who's great and breaks his record."

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